West Liberty-Salem Board of Education Hears Updates


By: Alli Harlan


Wednesday night the West Liberty-Salem Board of Education met to update the public on what is happening in the district.

To start the meeting, principal reports from Elementary, Middle, and High School were read. Elementary has started state testing as of yesterday for grades 3-5. They also had a great turnout from the second and fourth graders who put on two great music performances last week. Lastly, Lunch Buddies from the United Way was a great success this year and it just ended for this school year. They are excited to do this again next year.

Moving into Middle School, starting with March Middle School Students of the Month.

6th Grade:

  • Mallory Bishop
  • Layne Ferryman

7th Grade

  • Annabelle Booze
  • Braylon Lucas

8th Grade:

  • Avery Randall
  • Caydon Stir

Middle school is also in full swing for testing, it began this week with 8th grade ELA on Tuesday and Wednesday. 6th and 7th ELA is planned for Thursday and Friday. Then, next Monday and Tuesday will have 8th grade science, finishing the month with 6-8 grade math.

High School students were spotlighted for their efforts to help out Indian Lake. They donated over $2,500 to the Indian Lake Relief Fund. During our Spring Break, on Thursday, March 28th, WL-S had about 60 high school students and staff who volunteered in the Lakeview area. Indian Lake’s Superintendent, Dr. Robert Underwood, sent a thank you: “On behalf of the Indian Lake community, please send our gratitude to the West Liberty-Salem staff and students who took a day out of their spring break to assist in the tornado clean-up efforts. You’re greatly appreciated!”

Congratulations to High School Students of the Month:

  • Malachi Christison
  • Sidney Larison

Biology, English 10, and American Government testing was on Tuesday and Wednesday of this week for the HS. American History and Algebra/Geometry testing will be next week.

The board then moved into approving the following administrative recommendations:

  • The elementary teachers led by our Curriculum Supervisor, Stacy Dunn, and Principal, Aaron Hollar have come to some important decisions regarding the Language Arts curriculum and math curriculum for next school year. Focus on data, careful review, and pilots by staff helped to narrow the pool of possible curriculums to meet math standards and Science of Reading requirements from the State. Pending Board approval the following programs will be adopted.
  • Individuals as Volunteers for the remainder of the 2023-2024 school year are subject to approved background checks.
  • Resignation of Lori Milliron as an HS/MS Health PE teacher effective at the end of the 2023-2024 school year.
  • Creation of the Media Center and Student Success Coordinator. This position would administrate and organize the HS/MS media center while also supporting technology, online education programs, career exploration, graduation requirement tracking, at-risk student programs, and the College Credit Plus program to promote student success.
  • The purchase of Transfinder, Wayfinder application and 3 tablets to be used for driver assistance in regular and trip route wayfinding. The cost to purchase in year one is $12,766 to be taken from the FY2024 Transportation budget. Ongoing subscription, software, and data/satellite cost is $4221.

Superintendent Kraig Hissong talks about the tablets:

  • Purchase Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Into Math for Grades K-5. This math curriculum adoption will update and replace our current math series also from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt which has served the district well over the last 10 years. The purchased price of $124,755.02 is for a six (6) year subscription that will provide all print, digital, in intervention/enrichment materials for the program including the software program Waggle which is a digital software that supports individualized enrichment/intervention for students. The program was reviewed and selected by a team of elementary math teachers, curriculum supervisors, and principals. This will be purchased from the general fund.
  • Adopt the following programs to meet State mandates for reading curriculum and instruction aligned to the Science of Reading. K-1: Amplify CKLA (currently in use) + Fishtank Plus ELA, 2-5: 95 Core Phonics (currently in use) + Fishtank Plus ELA
  • The purchase of 200 ZAGG Rugged Pro Cases for the continuation of the 1:1 iPad program at the cost of $19,420.00 out of the FY24 technology budget.
  • Resignation of Beth Brock as an Intervention Specialist Teacher effective at the end of the 2023-2024 school year.
  • Approve the Resolution between Ohio Hi-Point Career Center and West Liberty-Salem Local School District to provide courses at the MS and HS in the career pathway of Allied Health and Nursing Program. The agreement is for three (3) years beginning with the 2024-2025 school year.
  • Approve a three-day early release for seniors for May 21, 22, and 23, 2024.
  • Approve a 60-minute early release for all students on the last day of school, Thursday, May 23, 2024.
    approve 8 Student Internship Technology Positions to assist in job positions related to internships in the field of technology as it applies to building maintenance, athletic reporting, student activities, coordination of transportation, and the planning and maintenance of the school district iPad and technology program. Positions will be filled through SOCHE.
  • Approve the contract with Data Path to install a new digital public address (PA)/intercom system for the WL-S PreK-12 building. Data Path met the requirements for the system and had the lowest responsible bid of $203,511.00.
  • First reading of the new, revised, and replacement Bylaws and Policies as recommended by NEOLA.

In the treasures report, the following were approved:

  • Minutes from March 20, 2024, and Special Meeting on April 10, 2024
  • Agreement with the Ohio School Comp 2025 Workers Compensation Group Rating Program, a program of OSBA and OASBO and Sedgwick (previously called Comp Management) and to pay the 2025 enrollment and administrative fee in the amount of $805.
  • Debt Interest Payments from the Bond Retirement Fund due May 17, 2024
  • Student Accident Insurance Policy for 2024-2025
  • Appropriation modifications/increases and all necessary increases/decreases/modifications to close out the year
  • Donations
  • Same base salary increase and a step increase as approved for the Certified Staff for the 2024-2025 School Year for Treasurer Staff Employee(s)
  • Two-year contract renewal for the following Treasurer Staff employee.
  • Purchase orders and invoices in which the invoice was dated before the purchase order as a “then and now” purchase, exceeding $3,000.
  • Purchase orders that exceed $10,000 and do not fall under the exclusion item reasons:
  • Financial reports

In items of discussion, it was mentioned that the FY2025 budget process has begun. That should be completed within the next couple of weeks. Mr. Hissong then discussed the changes that will be made by the next meeting to the handbook covering the drug policy. He also mentioned that evaluations are going to be completed by the end of April or early May.

In public participation, the Middle School Football Coach came to the board regarding the safety concerns at their home field. The field he was referencing does not have fencing around it, and very short bleachers for visitors.

Hissong recaps the statement:

The board plans to look further into the details to find a solution to this project.

A work session is planned for May 8th starting at 4 PM.

You can join the board at the West Liberty MS/HS Media Center for their next meeting on May 15th at 5 PM.